Friday, October 17, 2008

FOOD: Farmer in Chief

In his Open Letter to the next President this past Sunday, Michael Pollan offers a cogent policy position for the next President to enact that would change the way food is grown, processed and delivered in this country. Pollan positions this shift in policy as a way of addressing three pressing national challenges: health care, rising fuel prices and global warming. As he notes in the article:

"...most of the problems our food system faces today are the because of its reliance on fossil fuels, and to the extent that our policies wring oil out of the system and replace it with the energy of the sun, those policies will simultaneously improve the state of our health, our environment, and our security."

Pollan, the author of In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto, makes clear and broad reaching recomendations for how to "solarize" and "regionalize" the national food system. It is an important article, one that offers much to the debate that we should be having this election cycle.

Of the recommendations that he makes in the article, a number have are visually represented in food projects collected in the Partly Sunny exhibition. They include: 1. Four season farmer's markets, 2. Local abbattoirs, 3. Regionalizing food procurement, 4. Victory gardens, 5. Regional distribution systems, 6. Increasing urban and suburban farming.

Over the next weeks we will be posting more information about these projects as possible design solutions to the policy initiatives outlined in the letter.

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